Captain Avatar and Captain Hurne after meeting on the Victory following the promotion ceremony of Robin Phoenix to full Commander discussed an apparent clandestine attempt by a race known as the Kentic to gain control of vital sectors of the Federation. It was determined by Captain Hurne after completing an intelligence gathering mission that this was a very real threat and needed to be dealt with immediately. The Victory‘s next orders were for shore leave while the Columbia was instructed to explore a nebula which is located near the Kentic homeworld. After realizing that this was likely no coincidence, Avatar and Hurne decided that the Columbia‘s upcoming mission was likely a trap by the Kentic to gain control of the ship. The two decided to go along with the plan of having the Columbia explore the nebula, but have the Victory standing by in case trouble arose.
After finding nothing out of the ordinary in the nebula, the Columbia picked up a distress signal from a Federation transport, the Maelstrom. Avatar sent over an away team to investigate as the distress signal appeared to be legitimate. In order to complete the transport, the Columbia’s shields had to be down. It was at this moment, that two stolen Hyrook ships decloaked and locked a power sucking tractor beam onto the Columbia, rendering her powerless. The Columbia’s weapons were no match for the Hyrook ships. Fortunately, Avatar and Hurne’s plan of having the Victory in the area was a savior. The Victory was able to lure one of the Hyrook ships away from the Columbia diminishing the power of the tractor hold. The Victory and the Columbia were able to together destroy one of the Hyrook ships and severely damage the other.
Meanwhile, the puzzle on the Maelstrom was still being unfolded. Commander Franks and her away team found the crew to not be exactly what they appeared to be.